Indian-Origin Anti-Brexit Campaigner's Case Concludes In UK Supreme Court

At the end of a three-day charged up hearing, 11 judges from the country's top court heard representations from former British premier John Major, who accused Boris Johnson of "ulterior motives" for asking Queen Elizabeth II to prorogue Parliament.

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Indian-Origin Anti-Brexit Campaigner's Case Concludes In UK Supreme Court

Gina Miller has said her case is much more important than even Brexit.


London: 

The UK's Supreme Court on Thursday concluded hearing arguments in a landmark case focused on British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's decision to suspend Parliament as part of an appeal by Indian-origin anti-Brexit campaigner Gina Miller.

At the end of a three-day charged up hearing, 11 judges from the country's top court heard representations from former British premier John Major, who accused Johnson of "ulterior motives" for asking Queen Elizabeth II to prorogue Parliament and his stated reasoning that it was to present his new governmental agenda "cannot be the true explanation".

John Major, who had joined up his own legal challenge with that of Gina Miller to save the court's time, warned the Supreme Court that if it finds in line with a previous UK High Court ruling that the courts have no role to play in the political matter, it would risk allowing any prime minister to suspend Parliament in future for "any reason".

"That would be a remarkable position for the courts to endorse," argued Major, who was represented in the court by barrister Lord Edward Garnier.

Lady Brenda Hale, the president of the Supreme Court and Britain's senior-most judge, adjourned the three-day hearing with a statement indicating that the judges would hand down their verdict by early next week in keeping with the urgency of the situation.

"This court will produce an answer as soon as it humanly can. None of this is easy. I must repeat this case is not about when and what terms the UK leaves the EU (European Union). We are solely concerned with the lawfulness (of prorogation)," she said.

The judges are simultaneously also hearing the UK government's appeal against a contradictory ruling by Scottish High Court judges, who had declared the Parliament suspension "unlawful".

Gina Miller, who has been consistently cheered and booed outside the court room in central London since the case opened on Tuesday, has said her case is much more important than even Brexit.

"It is about how we are governed, about preserving our ancient democratic freedoms, and trying at all costs to stop a dangerous precedent being created that threatens constitutionally, politically and economically to impoverish us all," said the 53-year-old investment fund manager, born Gina Nadira Singh in British Guiana (now Guyana) to Guyana's former attorney-general Doodnauth Singh.

Johnson maintains it was right and proper to terminate the last session of Parliament, which rose last week, in order to pave the way for a Queen's Speech on October 14, in which his new government will outline its legislative plans for the year ahead.

He insisted the move had nothing to do with Brexit and his "do or die" pledge to take the UK out of the EU by the October 31 deadline, if necessary without a deal.

But the Opposition parties and some members of his own Conservative parliamentarian questioned his motivation behind advising the Queen to suspend Parliament.

An embattled Johnson was even forced to deny that he had lied to the Queen by masking his real intentions behind seeking the suspension, formally referred to as prorogation of Parliament.

Lawyers for Miller and joint campaigners challenging the suspension told the Supreme Court there was "strong evidence" the British prime minister saw parliamentarians "as an obstacle" and wanted to "silence" them.

In a submission to the Supreme Court, the government's lawyers said that if judges ruled against the PM, it would "still either be open or not open to the Prime Minister to consider a further prorogation", implying that Johnson could still suspend Parliament even if the court ruling goes against him.



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